The Cosmological Argument - Copleston and Russell

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  • Cosmological revisited
    • Copleston
      • They first of all agreed on the definition of God = a supreme personal being distinct from the world and creator of the world
      • "If one refuses to sit down and make a move, you cannot be checkmated"
      • He reformed Aquinas' 3rd way to that the first cause is necessary existence and nothing in the universe can be the creator of the universe so the cause must be something external to it
        • The cause for the universe must be something self-causing = a necessary being from outside of the universe
          • God is different from contingent beings as he is "his own sufficient cause" which explains the cause of the universe
          • Copleston
            • They first of all agreed on the definition of God = a supreme personal being distinct from the world and creator of the world
            • "If one refuses to sit down and make a move, you cannot be checkmated"
            • He reformed Aquinas' 3rd way to that the first cause is necessary existence and nothing in the universe can be the creator of the universe so the cause must be something external to it
              • The cause for the universe must be something self-causing = a necessary being from outside of the universe
                • God is different from contingent beings as he is "his own sufficient cause" which explains the cause of the universe
    • Russell
      • "I should say here that the universe is just there, and that's all"
      • Questioned why people thought the universe had to have a first cause, the universe was a "brute fact" and "just there"
      • The explanation of the universe is beyond human understanding and if you cant find out, don't try
      • You cant apply the same logic to the specific and the general and no such as a necessary being. Unnecessary for an explanation that goes beyond the contingent universe.
    • 1948 BBC debate between a catholic priest and an atheist
    • To understand the debate between the two you need to be familiar with the principle of sufficient reason, which comes from the philosopher Leibniz who developed a version of the cosmological argument
      • You need to be able to explain of why something and how something exists. A sufficient reason to explain the universe would be to explain how and why it exists

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